When Bad Things Happen to Good People

As I listened to NPR cover the story unfolding in Boston yesterday on my way home from Chicago – my fiance and I were just silent. Sometimes it just takes time to realize that some people have that much hate inside of them that they are willing to act out and hurt others. It was a very difficult listening to the coverage – and violent acts happen all the time. So I have begun working on a song called “When Bad Things Happen to Good People”. I feel that I have had this song on my chest for a long time. Something that I can turn to when I feel worn out by peoples hatred and violence. A song to give hope, but also deal with the hard question of “why?” Obviously, I do not have the answer – but I know what can make me feel more loving in my own heart. To recognize what is great and take time to be thankful. It does not erase the pain, but rather helps me deal with it in a positive manner. I will have the song posted here tomorrow afternoon – for now here are the lyrics. I just wanted to say there is no reason for why bad things happen – other than the existence of hate/evil. Rather than focusing on evil, I wanted to focus on love and hope. The verses are about what makes this country great and what I am proud of. In verse 2 it is my call to action. I hope that you can relate with this and find it helpful in this time of grieving.

Keeping everyone affected by this in Boston and throughout the world in my thoughts.

When Bad Things Happen to Good People

When bad things happen

Oh my god

To good people

There is no way around

It is a quieting sound

But hate won’t tear us down

It won’t tear us down

I love the way

People care enough to say

Oh I love you

And be safe out there

Just take care

In a world that’s always spinnin’ round

Don’t be scared

The fear will try to tear us apart

But in your heart

We must know

That the hate must die

For the love to grow

When bad things happen

Oh my god

To good people

There is no way around

It is a quieting sound

But hate won’t tear us down

It won’t tear us down

When news gets tough

You have had enough

Don’t throw your hands

And just give up

The world needs us now

Hate has knocked it down

Its up to you and me

And everyone around

Help someone back up

Even when your heart aches

The love you give

Must be greater

Than the love you take

Why Wait

This is written on the road. We’ve been on the road for over 18 hours in the past two days. My posts are supposed to be short but potent – you decide. I hope you enjoy.

Why wait
why sit around and procrastinate
this is no save the date
Collect words and Poems
let them propagate
Give them out to the world
and expect nothing back

Lifeless Piano

Checked into a hotel yesterday. Walking in I noticed a nice, but not too nice, piano sitting looking lonely and needing to be played. Just to ring out for a couple of minutes maybe ten at best! However I was denied very admittedly – I even felt lied to. They just don’t want any “kids” to touch the piano. It is a sad thing – which got me thinking – what is a piano with no one ever playing it. So here is a poem for the situation as it went down. Enjoy!

You know the piano sitting there is just a piece of wood

I remarked to the lady at the hotel counter

She looked confused and had not understood

That if an instrument makes no music

what is it

it truly is no good

sitting neglected

disconnected from the rest of the world

If it could speak

what would it say

I am sure it would be ready to play

sing and project

overbearing owner has no soul for sound

he just simply looks to protect

and deflect any “kids” from the wood and strings

the one thing in life that is truly made to sing

the lady looks at me again

treating me as if I were ten

and then says

I can not have the “kids” banging on the keys

surely she could not have meant me

but she did

so in reply I jabbed

a piano locked is just a piece of wood

I hope that you can enjoy that

this she truly understood

as I walked away feeling quite sick

One sentenced resounded in my mind

LONG LIVE MUSIC!!!

Shoulders Weathered

House hunting can really have some crazy effects on you. This house that we looked at had this car that had been sitting for a very long time. From what we knew about the owners and the energy in the garage it sent my mind into a tizzy. So I had to put it to paper as soon as I got home. It was this old car in the garage up on cinders, it was a very strong image burned into my mind. So go ahead and give it a read. Enjoy!

That is where the old car sits

Up on cinder blocks

Sitting the same way it has been

Since the day he died

Dust collected

Covered throughout

Smudged windows

Locked doors

Not one things has moved

Maybe it is better that way

Conversations happened late at night

When the world slowed down

Back in ’85

When times were easy and happy

Life happened since those days

It just does not seem right anymore

Days passed

Slugging slowly over shoulders weathered

In time she had to move out

No longer are the streets what they used to be

Safety gone

Changes made

She heard about the robbery down the road

Had to move out

It occurred in such a hurry

Still takes care of the place on Sundays

Sell it and getaway

My eyes wander back

To the car on blocks

Sitting since the day he passed away

Pawn Shop Wedding

We made our way out to the west side. Rough part of town, but we were on a mission. To find Ozark’s Pawn. Heard about a Gibson they had. Wanted to see it for myself. Wanted to see if it was real or fake. Finally found the joint – couple people hanging outside – started to feel like this just might not be right. But it was the joint we were looking for, just walked in right through the door. The Gibson was a fake, plane to see, it was in broad daylight, didn’t take much from me. But my love found a ring so shiny and loved. She knew we were sent here from above. So she snatched it up in a hurry and we left in a scurry. This is a poem about that afternoon at Ozark’s Pawn Shop. Enjoy.

This goes out to the thrifters

The seekers of deals and goods

My love and I embrace tenderly

The idea of gathering what you can

In ginger subtlety

Creaking doors

Bar lined windows

Smell of second hand soap

On your pillow

Dirty carpets with retro splash

Red in the corners

In the straight it’s black

Finger prints upon cases

Guns, knifes, rings, and guitars

We are going to pay for this wedding

No matter the scars

Bout doing whatever we can

We will go that far

Asking questions

Tapping wood

Making eye contact to make sure

The seller understood

What questions we asked to better know

The things he sells

New and old

We bought a wedding band

Not too bashful to say

The man straight up made us a deal

We could not walk away

Collected our things and got out of his space

Passerby’s can get weary

You have no real time to waste

I was unsettled

“We have to get where we are going”

So we took the ring to the jeweler

She was oh

Quite delighted

“You must have spent a pretty penny”

Truth be told

We did not spend that many

She pulled out a monocle and held it high

Then snatched it back to her eye

Took a good look and said in reply

Its well worth ten times what you paid

No way did you pay what you say

But the truth be told we found it in a place

Way out on the west end

We had not a plan

The man just made us a deal

That’s how our wedding plans began

The Gathering Cup

This is a truly ironic poem. I noticed it after writing it – because even though there are major crimes that go on in these countries (including the USA) I would wish to think that the coffee cup brings out the best of different cultures. Blame it on being naive, but it is a wish that I have. That somehow this bean is something that all people can relate on – unpretentious and simple. But obviously I know that where money goes follows corruption and tragedies of humanity. So I write this about the cafe – where people come to join. I have never been to Kenya, Ethiopia, Guatemala, or Mexico all that I do know about these places extend from my love of coffee. So here it is a simple poem trying to look at the brighter side of things and enjoy – best served with a pour over. Cheers!

The Gathering Cup
Kenya, Ethiopia, Guatemala, and Mexico
Gather here in this sacred place
Where aroma lifts slowly off frothed steel jugs
Dripping water slowly and carefully
Tender caress with no mistake
Roasting perfect and smooth
Lifts the mind and body
Brought back to the clanging of changing cups
Clearing out old liquids to make room for new
Splashing hot water into cracks and cleansing
Banging of tin and steel
Bringing out the thoughts of perfection
Conversations spiral softly and incoherent
Lips embrace subtle rounded porcelain
A gathering room for stories of wild fields
Both near and far
Take these memories where you are
The electricity huzzes and buzzes
Soft as a bee landing in the hive
Settling the feet ever so gentle
Charging the ice makers and MP3 players
A meeting place for like-minded
Or adverse minded
No one really minds
On certain days Matt will make a particularly good brew
Done with care to temperature and form
With pure focus
Now I return to my gathering cup
To the flavors of Kenya, Ethiopia, Guatemala, and Mexico
Rejoice

The Get Well Party that Never Happened

Recently my fiance had someone that she knew pass away from cancer – relatively unexpectedly. She had been making progress up until her passing. My fiance talked about how they were scheming to come up with a date that we could have a get well party for her and play music for her and her family. The unforturnate reality set in that this party was never going to happen. A pretty stark realization. Here is a poem in memory of anyone who has lost or is losing someone to cancer. Don’t ever give up the fight and have a memorable day.

The get well party that never happened

There is no reason for this

No rhyme or solution

Just the thought left with no resolution

My mind wanders what could have been

Scenes of a different story play through my head

What could have been changed

What could have been said

No answers come lightly

Or easy

Or quick

Sometimes your body cannot fight anymore

When it get too sick

Cancer

That is what took her before her time

It has no care or concern for anyone

Injecting itself into anything at anytime

Without a notification

Not even a sign

That is why moments must be taken with happiness

You never quite know

When it may be your last

When you plan the get well party

But it never happens

We must live in honor of those who have passed on

Remember them in the morning

And with the falling sun

Keep them in our hearts and minds at night

Because in the end

It is the love

That makes you feel alright

It Takes Time to See It

This is a poem about spending time with my dad. I have always looked up to my dad for inspiration and hope. He is the longest surviving kidney transplant patient in the world. He has taken every moment for what it is worth and made the best of it – and he has done a fine job. So this is about a day spent with him. Enjoy!

Late at night when words run thin

Have to think back to the day again

A warm spring day spent with my father

I would not spend it any other way

Never seem to be enough of these days

Wind whipping around from every corner

Making you wish it was just a tad bit warmer

Laughing and talking making it easy

Somehow we would forget it was breezy

Talk about life simple and complex

Where life was going

Where we were headed next

Taking every moment in stride enjoying it thoroughly

Turn the phone off forget about texts

Enjoy the sunlight when it peaked through

Always feeling more to talk about

Somehow I can’t ever seem to get the right question out

In his company I have found peace

I cannot thank him enough for all he has done

He has looked out for me and protected his son

Pushing me to go far in life

Never settle for second best

He never spoke much of working hard or commitment

He just lived it

Everyday walking the continuous line of example

Making it so his actions spoke ample

Amounts about his character and his being

I never learned from hearing

Only from seeing

So inspiration tonight when the words run thin

Comes from a man and I his kin

For inspiration I reflect and I sit

Yet it happens right in front of me

It just takes time for me to see it

Latched Upon Sunlight

Some days are just short writings. Time seems to fly by and I can not grab enough of it to sit down and do my daily writings. This week I am trying to get 2 writings done per day as next week I will be on the road the entire time. So here is a shot little piece – it is starting to warm up in the Midwest – finally. Enjoy.

Winter wears thin

Latched upon sunlight

A little more feels alright

Wait for more to come